(Button) Elephant in the Room-Tutorial

If you remember that button elephant I created a while back, you might also remember that I promised a tutorial asap! Well, asap has finally come, so here we go!


To make this cute little elephant, all you need are some buttons, hot glue, a wee bit of paint, a canvas board (which you can find at any craft store) and a frame.

First, draw out a nice, chunky elephant. I used card stock to make a stencil, which was inspired by a fabric pattern I saw online. You can feel free to yoink this elephant. And by ‘yoink’ I mean ‘copy’.

I got a dozen orders of these cute littles as soon as I shared the first one, so I was on an elephant-making rampage! As you can see, I used watered-down paint to quickly fill in the outline. This makes the end product look more profesh.

Now for the buttons!

Get out your trusty glue gun and add the first layer like so, trying to cover as much space as possible without going over the edges.

You know what? Making a straight line out of circles is kiiiinnnnd of difficult! But- with practice, you will figure it out pretty quickly!

For the next layer of buttons, try to overlap along the edges to create a straighter line, and fill in any gaps.

For the tail, just find a tail-shaped button…Wait, what?!?! How on EARTH did I stumble upon a tail-shaped button?!?! That was pure luck, so if you can’t find a perfect button, use some fabric or ribbon like I did on the lovely couple below.

For the ears, just use some buttons that are bigger and darker than your base color. I like my buttons how I like my men. bigger and darker. Just kidding….? Oh gosh someone stop me. Use white and black buttons for the eyes.

Add some button balloons, button grass, and a bit of detail with a pen, and stand in awe of your precious pachyderm!

Lets give these two some privacy.  😉

Oh gosh! It’s an infestation!

I was feeling generous, and my friend requested a button animal, so…

I slugged it right on up. Complete with slime trail. Cuz, hey, why not? And what better place to display slug art than on a cake pedestal? I always knew those things were designed to carry bigger and better things. 😉

Speaking of bigger and better things, check out what else I’ve been up to at my new Etsy Shop!  I’ve got some button art for sale, and also some really nifty jewelry! Check it out 🙂

Well, thanks for reading! Stay tuned for more fun nifty bloggage coming up soon! If you want to get more updates and fun buttony ideas, you can follow me on Facebook! 

AND it’s your lucky day 😉 I have  two of my button pieces for sale (and on sale!)  Click this photo for a link:


Or this one: sunsetfoxcollage

Happy pachyderm perfecting and button collecting!



About Busted Button

Where Creativity and A.D.D. meet…on a blind date…under a bridge…and make a baby.
This entry was posted in Button Art, Craft Tutorials, Painting Tutorials, Showing Off! and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

100 Responses to (Button) Elephant in the Room-Tutorial

  1. Pingback: Button Elephant In The Room | Busted Button

  2. midnitechef says:

    These are just too cute! Perfect baby shower gift 🙂

  3. Charlotte says:

    I LOVE this tutorial! Elephants are my absolute favorite. And I have two whole jars full of buttons! I can’t wait to make some of these!!

  4. The colors are great! Thanks for sharing. Greetings from Germany

  5. Pingback: El Taller de Bielisa » Elefante de botones

  6. Ellen says:

    I need more buttons!


    Hermosos, realmente hermosos, gracias por enviar.

  8. Maria Rita fernandez says:

    Preciosos los cuadritos!!!! Voy a realizarlos!!!!! Gracias por compartir tus ideas.

  9. Leslie says:

    Thanks for your awesome tutorial!! I just made one!! I used yellow buttons and all different colored buttons for the balloons. This is going to make the most perfect gift for an expectant mommy who didnt want to find out the gender. Thank you!

  10. Pingback: Wordless Wednesday: John Deere | Busted Button

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  14. Jayne wilson says:

    Could I please have the instructions for the John Deere button tractor, have many JD lovers in the family. Thank you.

    • Hi, Jayne! I will be uploading a tutorial in the next week or so 🙂 If you can’t wait til then, just find a good cartoon drawing of a tractor from google images and follow the same steps as i mentioned in my button elephant tutorial 🙂 have fun!

  15. Jenna says:

    Where did you get your buttons from??

  16. Pingback: 36 Inspiring Craft Tutorials - SlapDashMom.com

  17. Sarah says:

    I just made one I really appreciate you shared the instructions! So cute! You can see my facebook I posted a picture on there!

  18. Sarah says:

    Well here is the link:

  19. Zoe. S says:

    i love elephants and i wanted to make a elephant picture out of buttons although i didn’t know how so you have helped and inspired me, thank you.

  20. Pingback: Cuadros infantiles con botones « Madres y padres – Punto de encuentro

  21. Christina says:

    I love this and really want to make one for my friend who is having a baby boy and her theme is elephants and trees and colors are blue, green and grey…how perfect!! Question- approximately how much did it cost?

    • Howdy Christina! Welllll I have some pretty cheap buttons- you might be able to find some at a dollar store or a craft store- id say the average amount of buttons would cost 4 dollars, and the little 8×10 canvas was a dollar, and the frame was a nice one and was 10 dollars- but you could definitely find a cheaper frame! Have fun- so nice that you are making one for your friend 🙂

  22. http://creaties-jenneke.blogspot.nl/2012/09/diy-tutorial-olifant-schilderij-van.html
    I got your tutorial in the Dutch translated and yours name in the link.
    What a wonderful things make you Dear greeting jenneke

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  27. Wifemombrooke says:

    I love this so much it inspired me to make a bumble bee out of buttons for a friend 🙂

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  32. Nicole A. says:

    I am in love! I love elephants and these are just too darn cute! Would love for you to share some of your awesome creations on my Talented Tuesday link up here: http://feistymom.me/talented-tuesday-link-up/

  33. Nik says:

    Hiya, Please can I use a piccy on my blog with a link to your site? Here’s a link http://www.craftnovice.blogspot.co.uk/

  34. Sandra says:

    I LURVE IT SO MUCH ! Thanks a million for the nice tutorial !

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  36. Anonymous says:

    Oroginal! Imi place!

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  40. Kristie says:

    Where did you find the elephant to trace? Do you have it that I could print and trace onto my canvas? LOVE these!!!

  41. Cindy deRosier says:

    I’m the Editorial Assistant for Fun Family Crafts and I wanted to let you know that we have featured your button elephant! You can see it here:


    If you would like to display a featured button on your site, you can grab one from the right side bar of your post above. Thanks for a wonderful project idea!

  42. Stella says:

    what kind of frame did you use and where did you find it? I am trying to figure out how you were able to frame a canvas board.

    • Howdy Stella 🙂 I just used a normal frame from Walmart, but I left the glass out. If you wanted the frame to be more protective with glass, you could use a shadow box frame 🙂 hope that helps!

  43. Fantastic, they look awesome.

  44. Pingback: Faça Você Mesmo Quadros com Botões | Recicla Design

  45. megan says:

    Wanted to let you know this project was highlighted on the at play blog today!



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  49. sanaa says:

    wow!!! I have to say, you are one talented woman!!! I’ve got my hands full with just the one hippo!!! I’m a button art novice with not a single artistic bone in me. is there any chance you could do a tutorial on the digger or the tractor? also, I’m rubbish at shading, any tips!?
    keep up the good work

    sanaa x

    • thanks sanaa! im glad you are getting your button on 😉 i dont have a specific tutorial for those, but they are done exactly the same as i did this elephant 😀 with shading, do you mean with buttons or paint?

      • sanaa says:

        well both really, as I’m guessing the shading of thd paint will determine the shading if buttons… see what I mean… total novice 😕

  50. Pingback: Картина из пуговиц «Слон» | Мастер Поделок

  51. Connie says:

    Hi, I saw in another comment that you did not include the glass from the frame. But, how did you get frame to attach to the canvas? Hot glue? How do you hang it? From the canvas or from the frame back?

    • Hi Connie! This type of frame, which is normally used to display a photograph, comes with a back piece, which generally has a hanger attached to it 🙂 So you just pop the board in, then pop the back behind that- easy peasy 🙂

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